Every year when Mother’s Day rolls around, my heart feels a twinge – of sorrow, regret, empathy – I don’t know how to describe it, but it lingers throughout the day. I think of the precious women whose longing for motherhood is never realized and imagine how the celebration must stab deep in their hearts.
I think of those whose mothers failed or abandoned them and imagine how the day reminds them of what they will never have.
I think of those whose mothers are gone, and imagine the sometimes sweet, sometimes bitter memories that are stirred.
I had a perfectly lovely Mother’s Day this year. It was simple, relaxed and spent in the company of my family. I felt loved and appreciated and enjoyed the gifts, the food and the words of love. My own mother is a woman of rare grace and I am honored to have such an example of a woman of faith and boundless love.
But I’m embarrassed to say, there have been Mother’s Days in my past where my expectations for what should happen, how I should be acknowledged, what gifts I should have received left me feeling more self-pity than gratefulness.
I’ve had Mother’s Days when depression and a deep sense of regret over all the things I didn’t do right and the ways I mothered horribly made it impossible for me to get out of bed.
There’s something about the contrived, commercialized, over-the-top THING that Mother’s Day, has become that makes me cringe and want to quit celebrating it all together. But I’m not sure that’s the answer. Because the celebration of mothers and all that they do is a sweet and necessary thing. I just wish we could tone it down a few notches!
If you love the hype and noise of Mother’s Day and think I’m crazy, that’s fine. But for the rest of you, reading my words and whispering a silent “amen” I want to honor you today, on this un-Mother’s Day, a Tuesday like any other.
To the motherless, the childless and the ones with regrets
To the grandmas and the mamas with empty nests
To the mothers who do it all wrong – forget the school recital, let the kids watch too much TV, feed them Froot Loops for dinner and run out of toilet paper
To the mamas with the wandering child, the stubborn son, the ungrateful daughter
To those who do it alone, without reprieve
To the dear one with the messy house, the empty bottles of wine, the unwashed dishes and piles of laundry
To the brave souls who mother other people’s children
To the women whose quest for perfection exhausts and depletes them
To the mamas who yell and scold too often; who praise and teach too little
To those who navigate motherhood without a healthy example before them
To the tireless and tired ones with children who will always need them and never become independent
To the women with angel babies
To the lost souls in a dark hole who can’t get out of bed, and who are racked with pain, with guilt, with fear.
I honor you today with a prayer for…
May your minds be at ease, your bodies find rest and your spirits be comforted by the One who IS peace.
Happy Un-Mother’s Day!